Picture opportunities often present themselves at inconvenient times and your instincts are to push on and ignore them. I have learnt over the years that you always regret not stopping and getting the gear out, the picture that never was. I suspect that every photographer has a file of "missed opportunities" through either apathy or fatigue the picture that was glimpsed but never conceived. I made a resolution this year to chase every glimmer of a picture no matter what the circumstances, a no regrets picture year if you like.
It started as a faint glow growing steadily brighter. I could see over the top of the trees what I thought was sprinklers working under lights, playing fields being watered I thought. As I drew nearer I realised the moving mass was actually small crickets swarming around the lights at the Bendigo trotting track. A night meeting was underway.
Their zig zagging flight lent itself to a timed exposure which I hoped would show their erratic flight path so I fought my fatigue and pulled the car over.
I cursed myself for packing the tripods first. After a few minutes on the side of the road, the air heavy with expletives I liberated the sticks, the passing trucks must have puzzled as their lights revealed a lunatic hurling lens cases and light stands out of the boot. I scrambled down a steep bank with my gear and played around with exposures and apertures until I was happy.
It’s not going to win a Pulitzer but I am glad that I stopped and took the time to capture it. No sick feeling in the stomach for a lost opportunity.
From time to time this year I will post my taken opportunities here.